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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
http://www.popularmechanics.com/blogs/automotive_news/4232419.html

Popular Mechanics 11/19/2007 said:
It’s odd, but on the highway the Smart seems somewhat larger than its two closest competitors—the Mini Cooper and Honda Fit. And that’s probably because it towers over the Mini by 5 in.

...the transmission’s auto-manual shifting ability makes it kind of fun—especially with the paddle shifters. But the shifts aren’t exactly butter-smooth in automatic mode. Unfortunately, like most cars, the fuel consumption is directly related to the pressure exerted by the right foot. And since the Smart revs relatively high at freeway speeds, economy appears to plummet in proportion to speed more quickly than on some small cars. But drive, ahem, smart, and you’ll get 40 mpg in the city and 45 on the highway.

...Sadly, even though the three-model fleet will hit dealerships in January, wait for a Smart car is looking like six months to a year—ouch. But it’s worth the wait when you consider constantly rising gas prices and overpopulated urban sprawls; the efficient Fortwo simply makes a lot of sense.
Are you not glad you got your reservations in early!
 

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Originally Posted by Popular Mechanics 11/19/2007
It’s odd, but on the highway the Smart seems somewhat larger than its two closest competitors—the Mini Cooper and Honda Fit. And that’s probably because it towers over the Mini by 5 in.
And the MINI towers over my wife's Acura Legend by 4-5 inches. Maybe that's why the Smart feels like driving a small pick-up.
 

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I'm teetering between the Smart and Mini. I'm convinced the Mini is of great quality, but I'm in the dark on the quality of the Smart. I've recently been very impressed with a friends 07 Mini. Can anyone speak on their impression of the craftsmanship of the Smart in comparison to the new Mini? I realize the price difference is significant, but I expect high quality from such a small car with such a relatively high asking price. I could buy a larger subcompact for less.
 

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I like the quality of the Smart...very impressive. I'm wondering what the RPMs are when a Smart is doing 60 MPH for example. Anyone make a note of this?
 

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Bob,

This is a guess but for a 1 liter engine probably around 3K rpm or higher. Somebody in Canada or the UK will know for sure.
 

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MINI vs SMART

I'm teetering between the Smart and Mini. I'm convinced the Mini is of great quality, but I'm in the dark on the quality of the Smart. I've recently been very impressed with a friends 07 Mini. Can anyone speak on their impression of the craftsmanship of the Smart in comparison to the new Mini? I realize the price difference is significant, but I expect high quality from such a small car with such a relatively high asking price. I could buy a larger subcompact for less.
As a Mini S owner I would suggest they are very different cars for different purposes and driving styles. My Mini is the best built and most fun car I have ever owned, particularly if you have the opportunity to drive aggressively on winding and twisty roads. It gets a little boring as an urban comute car.

I am switching to a SMART because my driving is primarily for short distances in urban and suburban areas and it should be nuch cheaper to own and hopefully to service. Annual service on the MINI runs in excess of $300 to $500 after the 3 year free maintenance expires.

If money were no object I would again go with a new MINI S But money is an object for me currently and therefore I will switch to the SMART because it fulfills my current needs.
 

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I'm teetering between the Smart and Mini. I'm convinced the Mini is of great quality, but I'm in the dark on the quality of the Smart. I've recently been very impressed with a friends 07 Mini. Can anyone speak on their impression of the craftsmanship of the Smart in comparison to the new Mini? I realize the price difference is significant, but I expect high quality from such a small car with such a relatively high asking price. I could buy a larger subcompact for less.

The Smart feels like an ordinary economy car. The Mini feels like a tight, well insulated luxury compact. The MINI is also substantially more expensive. ($19k base versus $12k)
 
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